A while ago as part of my series, I met up with another university friend, Zubair. Zubair is a British 22 year old who studied Mathematics at UCL, but partly grew up in Saudi Arabia. Having studied and sat his public exams there, Zubair found himself at a slight disadvantage in applying to UK and US universities compared to those of his friends in the UK and USA. Although they were sitting the same exams, the resources available to him seemed to be lacking. This prompted him to create ZNotes, a free platform of revision notes accessible to everyone around the world. Recently, after having considerably developed ZNotes with an international team of contributors and supporters, Zubair has given talks and seminars encouraging equal education for all and is trying to get more involved in creating a new education system that provides this through discussions with those who influence policy in the UK. Here’s a little snippet of our conversation:
Aadil: Hi Zub, it’s been so long, how are you?
Zubair: I’m good Aadil, how’re you? It’s been amazing seeing what you guys have been doing in South Africa, I love your social media!
Aadil: I’m good, thank you, I hope you’ve been enjoying our content and I feel like you could have a great deal to contribute yourself.
Zubair: Yeah I love your music in particular, I always find myself singing along to those Will Gittens tunes. Absolutely, besides creating a video profile for the app and being an active user, I feel like I’d love to be involved in some of the events you guys do. I saw the UN SDG Summit you guys did in Ghana and I’d love to be involved in organising or even speaking at a similar event. SDG 4: Quality Education is really close to my heart and I’ve been spending a good part of 2019/2020 alongside my Masters and ZNotes trying to get governmental support for it.
Aadil: Amazing, yes those Will Gittens songs are brilliant. Yes we actually had a few more similar events planned but due to COVID they’ve been postponed – it doesn’t look like we’ll get an event in till 2021 at this rate unfortunately. I’ve been following your journey on LinkedIn and have seen how you’ve grown ZNotes so much since we finished our undergraduate degrees. I also keep up with your podcasts on education which I think have some amazing ideas that you could share on the AWAKE platform as well. Bringing some of your guests in to debate the ideas you discuss with other young people at AWAKE could be incredible. We’d love to bring you in to talk at events as well once they start up again and maybe we could organise something back at UCL?
Zubair: Absolutely, I’m in!
Aadil: Great! Lastly do you want to share with everyone a little bit about what your first video for AWAKE will be?
Zubair: Sure. I think I’m going to talk a bit about my story, my incentive and goals for ZNotes and how it has gotten to where it is. I’d then like to talk about my dream of providing equal educational opportunities to everyone around the world and how I plan to use ZNotes as a platform to do that. What started as a community for young people to share revision notes has so much potential for enacting real change in disadvantaged communities.
Aadil: Amazing, I can’t wait to see the story you’re going to tell. Anyway, I’ll catch up with you again soon to find out! Take care, Zub.
Zubair: Thanks, Aadil. Bye!